Beyond the few days of the monthly First Monday Trade Days, a visible revitalization to historic downtown Canton is welcoming shopping enthusiasts to experience its small-town charm anytime throughout the year. Visitors find plenty of choices for dining, shopping, a pocket park, and even overnight accommodations.

Stores in downtown Canton offer a variety of items for all kinds of shopping tastes.

Home decor, clothing, and gifts are found at the long-standing Hillard Furniture and in shops that joined in the past few years including Serendipity Consignment Boutique, Southern Accents, The Rustic Rose, Bombshells, The Rustik, Canton Dish & Decor, and The Rancher’s Wife.

Several antique, vintage, and collectible stores include Fitzgerald Antiques, Reminisce Antiques, Timeless Treasures, and East Texas Pickin’s.

The newest gift shop is Mad House & Co., a rustic-themed in-house candle studio. Owner April de la Fuente offers custom candle scents and other products including wax melts, body soaps and lotions, oils, skin care, clothing, and an assortment of snacks, hot sauces, and wines. Shoppers find the clothing racks for some stylish shirts, leggings, and sweaters on the clothing racks in ladies, men, and kids’ sizes.

Two other new stores offer just the right selections for bookworms and dragon slayers. S-n-J Comics is a nerd haven some say, like something out of a fictional story; deceptively small on the outside, with a maze of rooms and shelves on the inside. Filled to the brim with comics, Pop! Figurines, toys, and board games, the shop also hosts Dungeons & Dragons sessions on Friday nights.

A Wicked Read immediately greets guests with calm lighting and 16-foot custom-made shelves stacked floor to ceiling with hundreds of books. Owner Genevieve West shares her passion for books with a wide variety in all genres, including local and budding authors. Online purchases are also available. A Wicked Read hosts monthly book club meetings.

For a little “pick me up,” shoppers enjoy healthy smoothies, energy teas, and protein snacks at TradeUp Nutrition and coffee lovers enjoy The Pony Expresso located in a revamped bank drive-thru. The Donut Corner is a popular morning stop for locals and visitors alike.

A new snack shop on the square is Southern Pop where guests find a variety of homemade gourmet popcorn in flavors ranging from sweet cotton candy to savory cheddar cheese. Owner Tanya Watkins shares Texas-made products, which includes a wonderful selection of Blue Bell Ice Cream and Texas Dublin Sodas combined for a delicious Southern float.

She also offers a wide selection of canned goods such as homemade salsas, jellies, and pickles. They also sell plenty of delicious pet treats made from chicken, beef, or turkey. Gift baskets for friends and family and special occasions are favorite sellers.

A local favorite stop for sweets as well as a good lunch is Latham Bakery. Other downtown dining that gets high ratings are Val’s Italian Restaurant, The Kickin Mule, 3D’s Pizza, JT2 Gourmet Burgers, and Ochoa’s and Robles Mexican cafes.

For overnight accommodations, The Dragonfly Inn is located on the square and numerous hotels, resorts, and bed and breakfasts are just minutes away.

Besides First Monday Trade Days, special events take place throughout the year in historic downtown Canton. A farmers’ market is held every Saturday morning from April through October. Other activities include live music, holiday and seasonal events, fun runs, outdoor movies, and street dances.

Visit www.cantonmainstreet.org for details or call (903) 567-1851.

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